Bulletin 29 - July 1986: Hymenoptera Highlights
Hymenoptera Highlightsby Ian L. Hamer
This is the first part of several articles giving a detailed systematic list of the bees and wasps collected in the UAE over the period 1981 to 1985.
Obviously insects do not respect man-made boundaries so I have included species taken in parts of Oman which can be (or could be) reached without crossing formal border posts, and these have been annotated as such. In a subsequent article I will provide a brief list of bees and wasps taken in Oman proper during a vacation in April 1985.
I have attempted to give an idea of flight times and localities and although this cannot be a totally authoritative schedule (it is virtually impossible to visit each location every month of the year) a pattern can be seen to emerge as to which insects are likely to be present at various locations and at various times of the year. This will become more conclusive, however, as the following months of collecting progress.
In the UAE weather plays a vital part in the coverage of flora and the numbers of insects that will be present to forage from it. It has been noted that the 'freak' winters of 1981 and 1982 produced an abundance of plant life with exceptional numbers of bees and wasps. Drier periods have produced a more conservative number of specimens collected.
Likewise, some locations provide better collecting than others. Abu Dhabi over the last two years has provided many surprises and continues to yield several new species for the UAE. In order to simplify the information given as to locations, I have lumped together several collecting sites in similar geographical areas. A key appears at the end of the species list.
This part is solely dedicated to the bees of the UAE and I would like to give my sincere thanks to Major Donald Baker for identifying virtually all my material over the past few months and without whom this article would not be possible.
* Only bees in my own collection have been included - Giles Roche is currently compiling a list of the insects taken by him and these will be incorporated into a future article. Species marked with an asterisk are bees added to the Group's collection by Giles which are the only representatives of the named species and which I have included in order to obtain a more complete list.
** X. ferlestrata have been seen in several locations at varying times of the year. However, I have only included the specimens actually taken.
*** Likewise, X. pubescens, both male and female can be seen in several locations throughout the year but I have only included those taken.
1. A. florea have been recorded throughout the year in Abu Dhabi and all over the UAE (except the Liwa). Drones have been seen on the combs at various times and by the nature of their existence queens must also be present. The studies of this species will form the subject of a future article.
2. A. mellifera is not indigenous to this area and must have been imported by local beekeepers. This would explain why only workers have been taken in and around populated areas where apiculture is very likely to be practised.
Where the identification of a species is unknown it has been recorded as sp. under its generic name together with a number. Where a specimen closely resembles a known species, but displays slightly different characteristics and it is not known whether it could be a regional variation or a totally different species, it has been shown as sp. aff., e.g. Colletes species affinity to jejunus.
Nineteen specimens of Halictines together with three examples of Nomada species could not be identified and have been referred to specialists in these groups. Their determinations will be issued as an addendum at a later date. Also omitted from the list is a new Panurgus species (Andrenidae) which Major Baker will be describing in the near future. This will be included within the list when the description is published.Location Key
AA - Al Ain, Al Saad, Hili
AD - Abu Dhabi
As - Asimah, Uyaynah
B - Bithnah, Al Hayl
D - Dubai
DI - Das Island
F - Futaisi Island
H - Hatta, Huwailat, Munai, Wahlah
JA - Jebel Ali
JD - Jebel Dhana
JH - Jebel Howrah (Fossil Valley - Oman)
KF - Khor Fakkan, Khor Kalba
L - Liwa
M - Mahdah, Musah, Abool (all Oman)
WA - Wadi Agran, Madabah (both Oman)
WB - Wadi Bih
SM - Shweib to Madam
TO - Towean to Dibba
(Ed. Note: The original charts are available below.)
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